tv World Business WHUT January 19, 2010 6:00pm-6:30pm EST
>>abirached: this week on world business... >>: far more than just meat, halal is a multibillion dollar business and growing. >>: today we do over 5 billion us dollars off halal food and beverage products >>: the store where only the or are allowed to shop. >>: and movies with a message we meet film director and producer mira nair >>: i think that cinema is such an unbelievably populist medium and really connects cultures and breaks down walls
>>abirached: hello and welcome. i'm raya abirached and this is world business, your weekly insight into the global business trends shaping our lives. in islam, the word halal stands for all that is lawful or permitted under islamic shariah law and estimates suggest around 70 percent of the world's 1.5 billion muslims follow halal food standards. but food is not the only product where the halal label gets the tills ringing these days... >>capelle: meat - that's the first thing that comes to mind when most of us hear the word 'halal' - and while the islamically-correct slaughter of animals and no to pork are of course part of it, the global halal industry reaches far beyond the slaughterhouses, including products and services as diverse as cosmetics, financing and even internet search engines...-- business all in all estimated at over 2 trillion dollars annually. >>reporter: in order to tame this rapidly
expanding but poorly regulated market and ensure what calls itself halal really is halal, muslim organizations the world over are working feverishly to develop global halal accreditation. >>: at the forefront - malaysia - which, in agreement with the organisation of the islamic conference, insists that regulation of the industry will facilitate trade by speeding up certification for halal producers. >>azmi: first of all it would make the market less confused on which one is more halal, and what is halal and who is halal more halal than who and this will help businesses because they have a symbol that shows them halal is a quality standard which is not only a religious component and then for businessesthey can easily trade between the countries because at the moment a company has to get different halal certification in different parts of the processes and going to different
countries and it's actually not conducive to a global industry at all. >>reporter: some european countries like germany even with a population of over 4 million muslims have been slowto catch on to the halal bandwagon. and customers outside europe's larger cities still have a hard time finding halal products. >>nestorovic: in france businesses do not hesitate to invest in halal communication, we did not have this, you know, the european countries. so probably this is not visible enough and we don't have strong companies engaged in this field yet. maybe they feat something, maybe they fear the backlash for the rest of the population but we do not have that in other countries >>reporter: according to the world halal forum, the halal food sector is the fastest growing in the world accounting for 17percent of the global food market today. due to higher muslim birth
rates and immigration trends worldwide the sector promises enormous potential - in 2010, europe alone is forecast to generate 68 billion dollars in halal sales, with major multinationals like nestle, which already operates 85 halal factories worldwide, reaping the benefits: >>dijk: today we do over 5 billion us dollars of halal food and beverage products depending on the countries, in asia africa middle east we grow anything between 8 and 12 percent. if we look at europe which is a fairly new market we're growing 20, 25 percent. >>reporter: to date a mostly untapped market but one with a bright future is in logistics and transport, essentially ensuring that halal products are transported and stored
in halal-compliant environments and segregated from non-halal products to avoid cross-contamination. >>: latest research from malaysia shows that consumers also care deeply about the manner in which halal products are handled throughout the supply chain: >>tieman: the consumer finds it important, about 95percent of the muslim consumers want a halal logistics system in place and of course another important question is, is the consumer willing to pay for it because the industry says: well, we put a lot of effort in these cleaning procedures, dedicated facilities, dedication of transport so can we charge higher price to the consumer, and i think the good news is that the consumer is willing to pay for this. >>reporter: a few months ago the world's first 'halal' search engine launched on the internet, born out of the need its creators say to make surfing the net safe and void of explicit content for muslims:
>>sardeha: what we provide is a search portal with an additional filter so that the results fetched from our search portal from the keywords you are looking are safe and clean. for example what we really filter a lot is pornography, there is a chance of 99.9 percent that you won't log into pornography. >>reporter: while the halal growth potential clearly is enormous, without a globally binding standard and accreditation coming into placfast, much of the current momentum could fade with rogue traders and confusing halal labels potentially spoiling the party. >>abirached: it's well known that in recessions low end retail firms tend to do well, but in serbia trade unions have been working together with a local retail chain to take things a step further. there a chain ofsos shops has been opened where only people who can prove they are poor,
can buy products at a hefty discount. >>reporter: in the early hours these belgrade residents are queuing for the opening of a new social store in theserbian capital. >>: the sos market - also dubbed supermarket for the poor - sells basic staples such as bread, meat and vegetables up 70 percent cheaper than regular grocery stores. >>: belgrade residents who earn less than 20,000 dinars a month - about 280 us dollars - can receive a special card to shop at the store. >>: whoever came up with this idea it's a good idea because there are a lot of people who don't work andpeople with low incomes. >>: they should open an sos shop at every marketplace. >>reporter: after a steady growth of 7% a year since 2003, serbia was hit hard by the economic downturn. >>: in 2008 nearly 8% of the population fell below the official poverty
line and this figure is expectedto rise as the effects of the recession continue to be felt. >>lakicevic: the crisis hit serbia maybe a bit later than the rest of europe but the beginning of 2009 was markedby salary and pension cuts. since then the number of people living below the poverty line has risenby another 60,000. >>reporter: this daunting picture is something the trade unions could not ignore. >>savic: there are a lot of reasons for this idea, there's a huge crisis in serbia and deep social differences. the trade unions could not just sit still and do nothing. we proposed a social measures programmeto the ministry of labour within which we devised the opening of sos shops.
>>reporter: local retail chain jabuka, which means apple in serbian, runs the sos shops in belgrade. >>: there are hardly any well-known brands available and instead the stores feature local products or goods processed in serbia. >>: besides giving a boost to local produce, it also implies increased competition. >>lakicevic: these shops are needed because the competition in serbian retail is weak, products are expensive, there is a lot of monopoly. >>reporter: jabuka's sos model is different from serbia's standard way of doing business as it makes drastic price cuts by lowering profit margins. >>: while the concept is socially motivated, jabuka aims for a profit margin of around 5% compared to the serbian average of approximately 30%. >>miskovic: we were worried whether the sos shops were going to be profitable. so far they have been profitable which indirectly shows that there are a lot of poor people here
and a lot of them buy in these shops. >>savic: i would like to emphasise that the sos shop is not just this place, where you buy things, it's a project started by a union, which proves that prices in serb, as is the case in other countries in the world, can be lower. it means that retailers can survive with really low profit margins just like in serbia. >>reporter: whether other supermarkets will follow suit remains to be seen, but for now the project seems to be a success story with a long shelf life. >>abirached: and of course these stores don't just benefit shoppers, every one that opens will also provide at least 20 jobs. >>: still to come on world business... >>: can cinema help break through cultural barriers and push forward female empowerment: we have an interview with film director mira nair >>: plus we drop in at the asian games in laos.
>>: athleticism in asean and the rest in just a moment on world business... >>abirached: indian filmmaker mira nair broke through to western consciousness with films like salam bombay and mississipi masala and of course her 2001 film monsoon wedding, which won a golden lion at the venice film festival. her latest film is a biopic focusing on the life of legendary pilot amelia earhart. she is a firm believer in the power of film to change perception and to open people's minds to other cultures, so when i caught up with her in doha i began by asking her about the growing stature of arab cinema. >>nair: i think, you know, i really do think if we don't tell our own stories no one else tells them and arab cinema has been in existence for many, many years. but we have not
certainly had the exposure to see arab cinema much outside of the confines of the middle east. and also the other way, bringing films here. and so i think, of course, festivals like this with emphasis on community, on really reaching people in the community. because no one, you know, better than i do the power of cinema and the power of seeing people who look like us on screen. and the only way to really do that is have local people tell their stories, but tell them i hope with great excellence. >>abirached: is it also a way to get out of its own box? the same way i can make a parallel between egyptian cinema and bollywood cinema which is self sufficient but you know with film makers like you finally wentout of its box and reached a more international audience. >>nair: absolutely, i think that cinema is such an unbelievably populist medium and it really connects cultures and breaks down walls because the humanity of it, the universality of human
emotion is a given. and i personally have always believed that the more truthful and local you are in your cinema the more universal it could become. withonsoon wedding, with the namesake with some many of my films that are deeply about a specific experience it really has reached millions of people. and that's i would love to see that we don't know that about day to day arab or certainly qatari life. and so many misconceptions and twisted notions of what is, you know, a woman's life under the hejab, you know whatis islam and how does it oppress this or that. they're such questions and misperceptions in the west that we must, the one way of really silencing that and illuminating what the reality is through cinema but cinema told locally. >>abirached: absolutely, and it's always been a parallel theme in all of your films, empowering the indian woman,in amelia empowering the american woman. no the arab woman. how important is that eme
to you? >>nair: umm, well not so much only women. i choose themes that get under my skin and don't let me go, you know. butt is like someone said about my films, i don't make political films but i make films politically. you know, and that is true because i really do i think what you choose to speak about is a point of view. and that's why so many american films about vietnam never had a vietnamese character inthem, you know, so you only understand the american point of view. so similarly, i like in my filmsand i also like other people's films to be showing us realities we don't know about. and yet those realities are also about seeing yourself on screen. in monsoon wedding, people said it's like my jewish family, my danish family, my bulgarian uncle, everyone is on screen. i think people are universal and the question is to know that you have something to say and to make it in a way, craft it in a way that reaches. >>abirached:
what was the most inspiring fact of everything about amelia earhart for you >>nair: well, what captured me to make this film was her, is when i watched the 16 hours of newsreel of amelia, the real amelia earhart, i was struck by, even though she was iconic in her lifetime she was incredibly and consistently humble. and humility is not a trait u often associate with america, and that captured me. and then when i read about her and read her own writing, i was also very inspired by the fact that she just refused to accept boundaries for her dreams. and so what if she wanted to fly in the 1920s and 30s when flying was a dance of death each time, you know, she never even thought, or she's a female or she's, and women are supposed to be
at home. she just assumed that was her dream and she was going to systematically find a way to do it. but what also struck me was how sh the ecstasy she felt in the sky with her responsibilities she had on the earth. she always wanted to engage with the world beyond herself and i think that seesaw between passion and responsibility is a seesaw we are all on in the modern day. and we all try and find that route, men or women, and i wanted to be in amelia's company as she figured that out. >>abirached: how do you feel the story resonates today with what is happening in the aviation industry? >>nair: well i think thanks to amelia and gene vidal and all those people in the 20s and 30s, their dream was to make aviation a commercial reality for everyone and it is extraordinary how much we take that for granted that today i fly in from new york, tomorrow i go to india, that type of thing. i mean
in the 20s and 30s it was like going to the moon. and that's extraordinary, every time i sit on a planei think, wow, amelia really worked towards making this happen. >>abirhed: another reoccurring theme in all your films is the idea of nationality, where you belong, and how the world becomes global and, you know, becomes local again. how important is that for you? >>nair: well, i think it's so important, because now, its like planes are like cinema. you know, how like amelia used to say that aviation would annihilate the distance between cultures. similarly cinema doesthat in a very real way now. as a result, i mean, the world has become closer and there are so manypeople who have hybrid identities and hybrid lives. and i'm always fascinated with when does an outsider become an insider. when does a settler or can a settler become a native, you know, what is that? i mean that seesaw again is ripe with drama, you know. and it's astonishing that if you make
a film about that, you know, the gogol of namesake. it's unbelievable the lines of people that went to see the namesake were all initially, incredibly hybrid you know in the same way as mississippi masalawas unusually early in this hybrid kind of movie. and it's wonderful to see that there is such an audience of people that completely identify with trying to find out who they are, you know, because they come from so many places. >>abirached: you e an indo-new yorker, i'm a lebanese brit. we all get lost in translation. >>nair: we get, but we all relate to we each other because we all know what is the smell of home, you know, we all understand that nostalgia is probably useless, you know. it's engaging with the presence in afull way that is really the only answer to the confusion of being from everywhere. >>abirached: that's true. a final question about working everywhere in the world, you mentioned africa. how important is
the continent to you as a region? >>nair: well, i used to always regard myself as a daughter-in-law of africa but now i regard myself as a daughter. i've lived in uganda now since 1989 and i have planted a garden there, which is a very important way for me to feel, literally the roots, and about 6 years ago we established micha, which is a free east african film school. because i really believe that if we don't tell our stories no one else will tell them. and so little of the african story is on screen and hardly ever made by africans. and i feel like nothing i have seen really capture so much the dignity and the power of the people where i live, you know, in uganda. and so we established micha and so because of micha, and the garden, and the family, i'm very much at home there, and very much want to be engaged with the world there. >>abirached: every two years, the countries of southeast asia come together for a big multi-sports event -- the sea
(pron. sea) games. they recently held the 25th edition. and after participating invery games since the first one half a century ago, one of the region's least developed countries, laos, finally had the chance to play host. >>reporter: the people of laos had never seen a spectacle like it....and they packed the brand new national stadium in the capital vientiane for the sea games opening ceremony. >>reporter: it kicked off 10 days of competition featuring nearly 5000 thousand athletes from the 10 asean members plus timor leste (pron. lay-stay) or east timor. >>: we were traveling up in northern lao and we saw some signs up in one of the villages and so we thought we'd check it out on line and see what it was all about. then we decided we had to make our wayto vientiane to see all sports we could see in the next couple of days and so we worked our way down to be here for the beginning of the games. >>reporter: athletes competed in some 28 sports in all including many
familiar ones like track and field, tennis, badminton, diving, table tennis.... >>: ....obscure colonial remnants like the french petanque. ....and several of the less well known martial arts. >>reporter: for some events, like sepak takraw (pron. say-pahk tah-kraw) -- a sort of volleyball played with thefeet -- the sea games is the pinnacle of the sport, featuring all the strongest teams. >>reporter: asean countries are not exactly sports powerhouses, and the only olympic event in which asean athletes can claim to be world beaters is badminton. >>: but that didn't detract from the determination of the athletes, or their sense of achievement -- even when facing resounding defeat. >>reporter: aside from the obvious benefits during the games of packed restaurants, souvenir stalls and markets,the build up helped lessen the blow of the global downturn.
>>gil-hong: sea games preparation worked like a stimulus package like in other countries because it required basic infrastructure and some facilities. >>reporter: china funded the construction of the main stadium, while japan, thailand and vietnam also assisted with funding, as well as with key logistical support. >>reporter: landlocked and bordered by five countries, laos is increasingly looking to its asian neighbours to drive its economic growth. >>: some 70 per cent of lao trade is now with other asean countries. >>: asean as a whole is moving toward greater economic integration and rapidly stripping away trade barriers. >>maelzer: but it's not all brotherly love among asean members. there are plenty of irritants, historical rivalries and feuds, and even the occasional armed skirmish, most recently the border
clashes between thailand and cambodia over an ancient temple. >>reporter: at the sea games though, those regional rivalries manifested themselves in the best possible way -- creating cracking atmospheres at events. >>reporter: home crowd support pushed laos itself to new sporting heights, with the football team advancing to the semi-finals of the sea games for the first time ever. >>: there they met perennial underachievers malaysia, who had knocked out thailand -- the champions for the past eight sea games. >>reporter: malaysia struck first. but laos equalized to send their fans into a frenzy. >>reporter: malaysia ignored the script though, and scored two late goals to break laotians' hearts...but not their spirits. >>: whether the team won or lost, it's fine because it is the first time that lao
team is able to make it to be among the final four teams.' >>reporter: this group of laotians now live in the west. >>: i am proud of our lao country for being the host of the 25th sea games because it has never been done before in our history. this is the first time that the lao nation -the lao people living overseas as well as in the country have joined together as one laos. >>reporter: leading up to the games many doubted laos's ability to pull it off. >>: how would a country where the average income is less than 2 dollars a day, and where there is barelyany public transport system, for instance, manage to get some 10,000 athletes and officials, plus media, fans and an army of volunteers to and from the venues? >>: laos turned turned skeptics into believers. >>subramaniam: the whole organization of the 25th sea games by laos
is very superb in all aspects, especially the hospitality, the transport, the food arrangements. >>reporter: the games created new role models and heroes. and they created a new sense of the possible that many think could help carry the country forward. >>illangovan: lao has come of age. it has further enhanced the country's visibility and i'm sure all this will eventually translate into improving investment climate, which means more businesses and more tourists and more people will be looking at this country. >>gil-hong: this sea games will give momentum to upgrade their standard, and quality of their policies or business environment. so i feel this sea games will give some confidence. >>reporter: but for 10 days, such serious long term concerns got drowned out by the din of enthusiastic fans driving their athletes to new heights, and reveling
in their achievements. >>abirached: thailand may not have managed to make it nine titles in a row in football, but it still managed to top the medal table with 266 in total, followed by vietnam and indonesia. at the other end of the tabletiny east timor managed a total of three bronze medals. that's it for this week's world business. thanks for watching. we'll see you again at the same time next week.